If you do not properly prune a grape vine, or you prune at the wrong time, you will risk damaging your vines or producing poor quality grapes.
Typically, vineyards prune grapes into the four cane, single truck, kniffin system.
Using this method of pruning grapevines, each grape vine will be encouraged to grow in four branches along two levels of a trellis system.
The purpose of pruning grapevines is to restrict the number of active offshoots of the vine.
If a grape vine were allow to grow unrestricted, you would end up with an uncontrolled mess of vines and poor quality grape berries.
The vine would simply spread it self too thin and would not have the necessary resources to produce big, sweet, delicious grapes.
Grape vine pruning usually takes place in late winter or early spring, after the last frost but before the grape vines come out of dormancy.
Each year you will want to select two shoots on each branch that originate near the main trunk.
Cut the first shoot back to about ten buds.
This will form the basis of this year's harvest.
Prune the second shoot back to three or four buds.
This will form a renewal spur to be used for next year's growth.
A healthy vine can only support about thirty to forty fruiting buds.
If you all more than that, your crop yield and quality of grapes will be diminished.
Using the correct pruning methods will ensure the best possible harvest.